updated 10/9/2008 8:41:06 PM ET 2008-10-10T00:41:06

A federal appeals court and Ohio's high court have rejected a death row inmate's argument that he is too fat to die by lethal injection.

A three-judge panel of the 6th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati and the Ohio Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Richard Cooey's execution could go ahead as planned.

The 41-year-old Cooey is set to be executed Tuesday for killing two University of Akron students in 1986.

Cooey's attorneys argued that prison food and limited opportunities to exercise contributed to a weight problem that would make it difficult for the execution team to find a viable vein for lethal injection.

Cooey is 5 feet, 7 inches tall and weighs 267 pounds.

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